Work, work, work, the season begins!

The season had the best start ever with my friends CJ and Jack picking me up from the airport in Phoenix. That made the three hour trip to Puerto Pensaco so so much easier than the 11 hour bus ride to Guaymas like the previous two season kick offs.

Damn, commissioning a boat in the desert is tough work. Dreaming of days in quiet beautiful anchorages help to push you through when you start questioning your sanity. Or lack there of due to inhaling fumes from applying toxic bottom paint. Oh and to save yourself, wear a full Tyvek suit and gloves. I had the gloves but not the Tyvek suit and my body was covered in paint by the time we finished. Copious amount of acetone were needed to scrub off all the paint. Including on my face, don’t ask. That was probably two years of my life lost…

In addition to the bottom paint we installed new rudder bearings on the starboard side and reinstalled the newly balanced propellers. The rest was typical commissioning projects and cleaning. Lots of cleaning. Over the nine days we spent in Puerto Penasco Strikhedonia was washed five times. Sheesh.

During our time in the work yard we were so fortunate to have our friends CJ and Ted host us at their place so hot showers and awesome breakfasts came each day. Each night they took us to a favorite dinner spot. The last night CJ had a band she is friends with come play. Unbeatable two hour concert at our table was a perfect send off. One of my favorite memories of the night was the security guard, he had the largest smile listening and we even got him to play the maracas for a few songs. Good times!

Thursday night Lowell (SV Gato Loco) picked me up for the evening. First stop was to watch the sunset from his and Frankie’s lovely beachfront Cholla Bay home. A bit of wine and conversation added to a beautiful evening. Then it was on to Mar Blue to met up with Brian/Sue (SV Sea Rose) and Anne/Brian (SV Strange Byrds). The earlier wind storm had subsided enough to allow for eating on our private patio. With lots of Italian options on the menu we struggled with what to order and I think the Pasta al Mar was the hit of the night. However, I had no complaints with my favorite chicken parmesan. Another round of drinks and desert was on order. While non-traditional the crème bruel and cheesecake nicely closed out the meal.

On launch day it was a massive project. Strikhedonia was tucked in behind four other boats. First was Sea Rose, our friends Sue and Brian’s boat which they had been refitting for the past 17 months. Their boat is massive and required an extremely high tide so they would be launched first. After blocking them in front of the haulout slip they moved Anne and Brian on Strange Byrds, then a monohull, and finally we were moved in front of Sea Rose. High tide was 12:46pm and the drama didn’t stop there, Brian was stung by a bee (and is highly allergic) around 11:45 and Sue rushed him to the clinic. Thankfully he was okay an made it back just in time to launch. About 12 people helped ensure Sea Rose was unscratched as she was lowered back into the sea. Strikhedonia was next up and with much less stress and fanfare we motored to a slip at Safe Marina. The stressful step behind, I needed a couple beers.

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